Layer x JMA

Manchester / United Kingdom /
Team: Baraa El Sayed / Eddie Pugh / James Hartwell / Maisie Irving /
Jury Statement:

What about this site deems it LOST?…. Is it a loss of access? A site deemed unfit and unsafe for public consumption. Is it a loss of profit? A site lost to the speculating landowners who wait to gentrify it into an urban ‘lifestyle’ complex. Or is it a loss of productivity? A site once steeped in industrial production now just doing ‘nothing’? We believe the real loss here is connection – connections to public space, nature, and each other.

Getting lost is important. It gently but persuasively pushes back against dominant trajectories of human habit, expectation, and understanding. A trajectory that has lead to insurmountable climatic changes, environmental destruction and deeply engrained social issues. To be lost is to wander, to slow down, to alter expectation and to find new outcomes. Our proposal acknowledges getting lost is a powerful tool – and challenges how being lost can lead us to new connections, relationships and futures.

Monotonous approaches to ‘leftover urban spaces’ where land is retained as car parking result in a patchwork of lost sites in urban centres like ours. Our response aims to start the conversation around the value of ‘losing’ space to nature, whilst challenging the capital-centric approaches often taken when addressing these ‘leftover’ zones.